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Estimation of Population Coverage in the 1990 United States Census Based on Demographic Analysis

J. Gregory Robinson, Bashir Ahmed, Prithwis Das Gupta and Karen A. Woodrow
Journal of the American Statistical Association
Vol. 88, No. 423 (Sep., 1993), pp. 1061-1071
DOI: 10.2307/2290799
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2290799
Page Count: 11
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Estimation of Population Coverage in the 1990 United States Census Based on Demographic Analysis
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Abstract

This article presents estimates of net coverage of the national population in the 1990 census, based on the method of demographic analysis. The general techniques of demographic analysis as an analytic tool for coverage measurement are discussed, including use of the demographic accounting equation, data components, and strengths and limitations of the method. Patterns of coverage displayed by the 1990 estimates are described, along with similarities or differences from comparable demographic estimates for previous censuses. The estimated undercount in the 1990 census was 4.7 million, or 1.85%. The undercount of males (2.8%) was higher than for females (.9%), and the undercount of Blacks (5.7%) exceeded the undercount of Non-Blacks (1.3%). Black adult males were estimated to have the highest rate of undercounting of all groups. Race-sex-age patterns of net coverage in the 1990 census were broadly similar to patterns in the 1980 and 1970 censuses. A final section presents the results of the first statistical assessment of the uncertainty in the demographic coverage estimates for 1990.

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